Q&A: Expanded BEEP will pay up to €90 per cow-calf pair

Q&A: Expanded BEEP will pay up to €90 per cow-calf pair
Optional vaccination or pre-weaning meal feeding, and faecal egg testing for cows, have this year been added to the mandatory weighing action, in BEEP.

Applications for the Beef Environmental Efficiency Programme BEEP (sucklers) for 2020 opened last week.

The BEEP-S programme, with a funding provision of €35m in 2020, will target weaning efficiency of suckler cows and calves, by measuring the live weight of the calf at weaning as a percentage of the cow’s live weight.

Participants will also be encouraged to implement optional health and welfare measures.

Participants completing all mandatory and optional actions available will be eligible for up to €90 for the first ten suckler cow/calf pairs per herd, and up to €80 per pair thereafter, subject to a maximum of 100 pairs per herd.

The mandatory weighing action pays €50 per cow/calf weighing per herd (first ten), and €40 per cow/calf weighing thereafter. It measures the ratio of calf weight at weaning to maternal weight, to identify the most economic and environmentally efficient suckler cows in the herd.

An optional action to improve suckler calf health and welfare at weaning pays €30, with a choice of a vaccination programme or a pre-weaning meal feeding programme.

Another optional action pays €10 for participation in a faecal egg testing programme for control of liver and rumen fluke in adult suckler cows.

Applications must be made online, the closing date is May 15, 2020.

Where are all details of the Scheme set out?

All details are set out in the terms and conditions document on the Department’s website.

Who can apply?

Suckler farmers must have one or more beef breed animals born in the herd between July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020.

What number of animals will be paid on?

Payment will only be made on the number of unweaned calves born on the holding between July 1, 2019 and June 30, 2020, and where the weights of both the live calf and their live dams have been recorded and submitted to ICBF, to a maximum of 100 calves.

What is the payment rate?

Payment will be €50 for the first ten cow/calf weighings per herd and €40 per cow/calf weighing thereafter.

Meal feeding at €30 per calf weighed or vaccination at €30 per calf.

Faecal egg testing at €10 per cow.

How do I apply?

Application may only be made through the online facility which will be available through www.agfood.ie

Will there be selection criteria applied if it is oversubscribed?

In the event of oversubscription, there will be a linear reduction to each payment.

Do you have to be in the BDGP to apply?

No, farmers that are not in BDGP can apply.

Do you have to be in BEEP 2019 to apply?


Is a Friesian calf bred from a Charolais cow eligible?

No. The bull used must be of a beef breed. as defined in the terms and conditions.

Does the sire (bull) have to be a purebred/pedigree bull?


What is the duration of the BEEP-S?

It is a one-year programme, for 2020.

Is the BDGP reference number of animals linked to BEEP-S?

There is no connection between the reference number of animals for BDGP and BEEP-S.

Will I be paid extra for twins?

Yes, provided weights are recorded for cow and both calves and actions are taken for both.

When will payment issue?

Payments will commence in Q4 2020. Applicants will be paid if all weighings have been submitted and information on additional actions recorded and, where necessary, verified.

Where can I weigh my animals?

The animals must be weighed on your holding.

Animals must be weighed individually and on the same day. All details relating to scales, weighing procedure, and recording weights are in the terms and conditions.

What are the options available to get scales?

There are two options available to herd-owners for the recording of weight data as part of BEEP-S.

n a rental model, whereby participants rent scales from an approved field service agent to undertake the BEEP weight recording process.

n or owned, borrowed or using a third-party service providers’ scales. This is where a farmer can use their own scales or one belonging to a third party. These scales will have to be pre-registered with ICBF as per the terms and conditions.

Where can I get details of the rental model locations?

Information is available on the www.icbf.com website.

What is the correct procedure for weighing cows and calves?

This is set out in the terms and conditions, which must be followed. ICBF will advise farmers the most suitable time frame, based on the calving pattern of each herd.

Where can I enter the weights?

The preferred method will be electronic options including smartphone apps, ICBF webpage, and farm software. An official paper form is also available from ICBF.

If the weighing scales was previously registered does it have to be registered again?

No, scales previously registered for BEEP 2019, do not need to be re-registered.

How long do I have to use meal feeding for?

You must introduce meal feeding for a period of four weeks pre-weaning and two weeks post weaning. All details of meal feeding can be found in Annex 2 of the terms and conditions.

What vaccination should I use?

Veterinary advice should be sought for a suitable vaccination programme, details in relation to vaccination can be found in Annex 3 of the terms and conditions.

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